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Mortgage companies join first-time homebuyer program

Three independent mortgage companies, including some of the state’s largest, for the first time have joined Governor Deval Patrick’s push to help lower income, first-time home buyers get loans.

Mortgage Master, New England Moves Mortgage Company, and William Raveis Mortgage have agreed in the past month to do more loans for potential buyers earning below the state’s median income.

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Several banks had already signed onto the program, including Citizens Bank and Eastern Bank, after it was launched in 2013.

The goal of the program is to provide 10,000 mortgage loans in the next five years to first-time buyers through MassHousing — the state’s affordable housing bank — and the nonprofit Massachusetts Housing Partnership. So far, 26 lenders have committed to participating.

The program’s home-buyer education component and its focus on helping stabilize neighborhoods were appealing, said Paul Anastos, president of Walpole-based Mortgage Master.

The initial commitment from these companies, however, is small. Mortgage Master has agreed to 10 loans and New England Moves has promised about 150 loans for this year, according to state officials.

Tom Callahan, executive director of the Massachusetts Affordable Housing Alliance, said he hopes their participation will encourage more nonbank institutions.

Deirdre Fernandes can be reached at
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